Royal red shrimp (Pleoticus robustus)

Photo Credit: NOAA

Description: Although royal red shrimp are a very small portion of the shrimp industry in the Southeast U.S., they are some of the most sought after shrimp around. Royal reds are considered some of the best tasting wild shrimp. They’re meat is sweet and has been described as lobster-like, but they’re not easy to harvest because they’re found so deep. In fact, this vibrant red animal wasn’t the target of any commercial fishery in the Gulf until the 1960’s after the federal government hauled them up in a deep water trawl and decided to develop and experimental fishery.

Geographic Distribution

Figure 1: Relative probability of occurrence of Royal red shrimp (Pleoticus robustus) based on computer generated distribution maps. Data source: Aquamaps

Depth Profile

Figure 2: Approximate depth range of Royal red shrimp (black box). Slope of seafloor is a generalized representation of the Gulf of Mexico shelf and outer continental shelf.